Shares of payments company Payoneer closed about 1.5% lower after its market debut Monday on Nasdaq, giving it a market capitalization of just over $ 1 billion.
The company went public by merging with FTAC Olympus Acquisition Corp., a blank check company run by Bancorp founder Betsy Cohen. The stock was previously traded under the ticker symbol FTOCU for Cohen’s special purpose vehicle. At the time the deal was announced in February, Payoneer was valued at $ 3.3 billion.
Cohen and his team were on the SPAC trend before the 2020 mania started – FTAC is their fourth fintech-focused shell company. One 2018 SPAC announced a merger agreement late last year with payment provider Paya. Another, which went public in January 2017, was merged with International Money Express. FinTech Acquisition, which went public in February 2015 along with CardConnect, was subsequently acquired by First Data for approximately $ 750 million.
Special purpose acquisition companies, known as SPACs, raise money through a shell company to buy an existing company and have become increasingly popular in the last year.
Payoneer specializes in facilitating cross-border payments. The New York City-based fintech startup was started in 2005 by Yuval Tal, an Israeli businessman who helped start other e-commerce and technology payment companies. Scott Galit joined as CEO in 2010 after years at First Data and Mastercard. In March, the company partnered with Mastercard to offer small businesses a digital payment card.
There are more than 5 million users on the Payoneer platform and the company works with more than 150 different currencies, specializing in cross-border payments. Airbnb, Amazon, Google and the freelance platform Upwork are among his corporate clients, as well as millions of independent contractors and small businesses.
The two-time CNBC Disruptor 50 company is the latest New York-based company to hit the public markets, joining a growing list that includes names like Etsy, MongoDB, and Peloton. While the biggest offerings generally come from Silicon Valley and San Francisco, 2021 is turning out to be a hugely successful year for New York, with DigitalOcean, UiPath and Compass already going public.